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1 Number Apple Stock Investors Should Know Ahead of Earnings

By Tim Beyers - Apr 14, 2013 at 6:30PM

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These metrics could make the difference between a pop and a drop.

If Apple (AAPL 4.08%) stock rallies after the company reports earnings on April 23, it'll be because of iPad sales. According to Fortune's survey of analyst projections, the median estimate is 18 million tablets sold, or about 56% more than last year's fiscal Q2 total of 11.8 million. Recent history and industry reports suggest that the iPad Mini could account for the majority of those sales.

Smaller tablets are gaining ground as a whole. Five of the nine most popular tablets listed at Amazon.com (AMZN 3.66%) were 7 or 8 inches. The Mini ranked ninth, while Samsung's 10.1-inch Galaxy Tab ranked sixth. Various models of Amazon's Kindle occupied the other spots.

For its part, Wall Street is expecting fiscal Q2 revenue to increase 8.9% to $42.68 billion, resulting in $10.13 of profit per share. The company beat earnings estimates in only two of its past four quarters, highlighted by a 10.1% miss in the June quarter, according to data supplied by Yahoo! Finance. Apple stock is down 32% over that period.

Will Apple stock rally following the report? Tim Beyers of Motley Fool Rule Breakers and Motley Fool Supernova weighs in on this question in the following video. Please watch and then leave a comment to let us know whether you would buy, sell, or short Apple stock at current prices.

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Apple Inc. Stock Quote
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